FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Saturday 12/17/22

At his lowest salary in December, Phoenix's Devin Booker ranks fourth among guards with 44.2 expected FanDuel points. Which other players are important decision points for Saturday's main slate?

If you're new to daily fantasy basketball -- maybe you started your DFS journey during the MLB or NFL seasons, or maybe basketball is your sport and this will be your first year giving it a shot -- you're in for a treat. The NBA scene changes on a week-to-week, day-to-day, and -- depending on injury news -- even a minute-to-minute basis, making every slate a unique one that requires an ever-changing approach.

With so much changing so quickly, we're here with plenty of tools to help you out. We have daily projections, a matchup heat map, a lineup optimizer, and a bunch of other great resources to help give you an edge.

Daily fantasy basketball is very reliant on a player's opportunity, so you'll need to make sure that you're up-to-date with key injuries. Our projections update up until tip-off to reflect current news, we have player news updates, and the FanDuel Scout app will send push notifications for pressing updates regarding your players.

We'll also be coming at you with this primer every day, breaking down a few of the day's top plays at each position.

Let's break down today's main slate on FanDuel.

TeamOppO/USpreadImplied TotalInjuries
DALCLE215.53.5106Kleber, Doncic, Powell, Green, Dinwiddie OUT
CLEDAL215.5-3.5109.5Stevens doubtful
HOUPOR2284.5111.75Sengun probable
OKCMEM232.58.5112Gilgeous-Alexander, Giddey, Bazley OUT
UTAHMIL2305112.5Sexton OUT
NOPHX228.53.5112.5Ingram OUT
PHXNO228.5-3.5116Ayton OUT
PORHOU228-4.5116.25Grant OUT. Hart probable
MILUTAH230-5117.5Antetokounmpo OUT, Middleton OUT / Holiday probable
MEMOKC232.5-8.5120.5Bane OUT


Ja Morant ($10,700): In an underrated spot versus a Oklahoma City Thunder allowing points guards to score 24.2 real-life points and 47.2 FanDuel points per game, Morant stands third overall with 46.9 expected FanDuel points at his second highest salary point this season. Despite a poor shooting night in their previous meeting last month, Morant still accounted for 44.9 FanDuel points and 11 assists.

Damian Lillard ($9,900): Despite scoring 27.7 fantasy points in his last outing, Lillard's FanDuel salary has moved up to his highest point this season against a Houston Rockets' team allowing the most fantasy production to point guards. Since his return on December 4th, Lillard is averaging 1.40 FanDuel points per minute.

Devin Booker ($8,700): At his lowest salary point in December, Booker will have a challenging matchup versus a New Orleans Pelicans' team ranked third in FanDuel points allowed per game to his position and fourth in defensive rating. In 118.9 minutes with today's current injuries, Booker sees a 0.10 boost to 1.28 FanDuel points per minute with a 32.6% usage rate.

Jrue Holiday ($8,400): After Khris Middleton and Giannis Antetokounmpo was ruled out, Holiday should play an increased offensive role in his return, averaging 1.37 FanDuel points, 0.30 assists, and 0.63 shot attempts in a 226.8 minutes sample size this season.

Chris Paul ($8,300): Phoenix's veteran guard sees a noticeable 0.23 increase in his fantasy production to 1.28 FanDuel point per minute in a 96.7 minutes sample size with today's projected rotation.

Darius Garland ($7,600): Since December 10th, Garland's FanDuel has dropped 9.5% to his second lowest salary this season. Cleveland's emerging point guard is averaging 0.99 FanDuel points, 0.13 rebounds, and 0.23 assists during this time period.

Anfernee Simons ($7,000): Portland's guard has seen his FanDuel salary decrease by 15.6% in the past week to his lowest point since October 26th. The 23-year old is averaging 0.86 FanDuel points, 0.12 assists, and 0.47 shot attempts in 235.5 minutes this month.

Josh Hart ($5,700): Despite a low usage rate since his return on December 4th, Hart is recording 0.81 FanDuel points, 0.24 rebounds, and 0.09 assists per minute.

Grayson Allen ($4,300): Milwaukee's three-point specialist rates as an optimal low salary option with a 5.09 value rating and 21.9 expected FanDuel points with Khris Middleton inactive.

Kemba Walker ($3,800) / Frank Ntilikina ($3,700) : Despite a tough matchup versus a Cleveland Cavaliers' team ranked second in FanDuel points allowed per game to point guards, Ntilikina stands as numberFire's top value option at his position with a 7.25 rating and a 26.8 fantasy projection while Walker's projection includes 10.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 3.8 assists in 22.4 minutes.


Zion Williamson ($10,100): At his second highest salary this season, Williamson is numberFire's second ranked forward with a 46.1 fantasy point projection. In their past two meetings, the Pelicans' star has played well against his new rivals, averaging 48.7 FanDuel points and 35.0 real-life points.

Lauri Markkanen ($7,900): Despite scoring 31 real-life points in his last game, Markkanen's FanDuel salary has moved down to his second lowest point this month against a Milwaukee Bucks' unit ranked first in opposing true shooting percentage and second in defensive rating.

Bobby Portis ($6,600): In 404.3 minutes with today's expected inactives, Portis is averaging 1.23 FanDuel points, 0.44 rebounds, and 0.48 shot attempts per minute.

Christian Wood ($6,500): At his lowest salary this month, Wood is numberFire's second rated value option at the forward positions with a 6.07 rating and 39.4 expected FanDuel points with tonight's short-handed rotation.

Dillon Brooks ($6,300): Even at his second highest salary this month, Brooks is an undervalued play with a 5.33 rating and 33.6 expected FanDuel points versus a Thunder team ranked 22nd in opposing three point shooting percentage and 16th in defensive rating.

Aleksej Pokusevski ($5,100): After the Thunder ruled out two starters, Pokusevski stands fifth overall in value with a 5.93 rating and a 30.3 fantasy projection versus a Memphis team ranked third in opposing true shooting percentage.

Tim Hardaway Jr. ($5,000): After the Mavericks ruled out Luka Doncic and Spencer Dinwiddie, the veteran should be one of their top offensive options, averaging 1.50 FanDuel points with a 38.6% usage rate with both off the floor this season.

Torrey Craig ($5,000): Phoenix's veteran sees an eye-popping 0.24 increase to 1.07 FanDuel points per minute with today's injuries at his median salary in December.

Dorian Finney-Smith ($4,200): After a 6.6% salary decrease, the Mavericks' 29-year old forward is rated fourth among forwards in value with a 5.26 rating and a 22.1 FanDuel point projection.


Alperen Sengun ($6,300): In a great matchup against a Portland Trail Blazers' team ranked 26th (56.1) in FanDuel points allowed per game to centers, Sengun is fourth in value among his position with a 5.07 rating and 32.0 expected FanDuel points at his lowest salary point this month.

Brook Lopez ($6,200): Milwaukee's big man is averaging 1.013 FanDuel points, 0.17 rebounds, and 0.10 blocks per minute in a 380.0 minutes sample size with Saturday's current injuries.